The Benefits of Medically Assisted Detox

Overcoming Addiction May Require a Period of Medical Detox

For those who struggle with a drug or alcohol addiction, medically assisted detoxification is often required. This process is the initial step in the recovery process and takes place before attending an inpatient treatment program. When individuals go through a period of medical detox, they will be safely weaned off of the substance of abuse in a controlled and monitored environment using a substitute drug.

Some of the most common substitute detox drugs are:

  • Suboxone
  • Methadone
  • Benzodiazepines

The detox period can last anywhere between three and five days and is designed to help ease the withdrawal symptoms that may ensue as a result of detox. It is highly advised that an individual never does a detox alone as the body can go into a state of shock if the individual goes ‘cold turkey’. During the detox period, the individual will live at the facility so that they can be monitored on an around-the-clock basis to ensure that their detox is going smoothly.

Substances of Abuse That Require Medical Detox

Some addictions are more likely to require medical detox than others. What is also factored into whether an individual requires medical detox is how long the individual has been addicted. 

Some of the most common classes of substances that will require a period of medical detox are:

  • Opioids (Prescription Narcotics)
  • Heroin
  • Alcohol
  • Benzo’s

If individuals who are addicted to drugs or alcohol do not receive the necessary help to get better, they run the imminent risk of an overdose. These individuals must get the help that is essential to their recovery.

Some of the common side effects that may be experienced during the detox period are:

  • Vomiting
  • Runny nose
  • Nausea
  • Chills
  • Muscle pain and aches
  • Feeling restless and anxious
  • Sleeping issues
  • Irritability
  • Agitation 
  • Confusion 
  • Cravings 

While these symptoms may be slightly uncomfortable, they are short-lived and can be managed with the help of medical detox. By tapering the body off of the substance of abuse, it is allowing the body and mind to gradually get used to the idea of sobriety. Once the detox period is complete, the individual will move on to complete an inpatient treatment program where they will receive further treatment, counseling, and therapy. 

Getting Help

It’s imperative that if you or a loved one is struggling with an addiction to drugs or alcohol that you get immediate help. Since addiction is a chronic and progressive disease, it will continue to worsen the longer you wait to get help. You must get professional help now if you want to live a life that is worth every minute. You do not have to be controlled by your addiction any longer. 

Sources:

https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/teaching-packets/understanding-drug-abuse-addiction/section-iii/7-medical-detoxification

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25343657

If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.

About the Author

is a proud alumni member of WhiteSands Treatment. After living a life of chaos, destruction and constant let downs, Mark was able to make a complete turnaround that sparked a new way of life. He is serious about his recovery along with helping others. At WhiteSands Treatment, we offer support to you in your homes or when you are out living in your daily lives.